Dooley kicks off Selma QB Club season

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Dreaming and the joys of coaching topped the agenda

Tuesday night as former University of Georgia head football coach and athletic director Vince Dooley visited the Selma Quarterback Club.

Dooley’s visit kicked off the 63rd season of the Quarterback Club, consisting of 229 members.

Email newsletter signup

“This is a great way to start the 63rd season of the Selma Quarterback Club,” club captain Bill Quarterly said. “We couldn’t have picked a better person to speak. He has strong ties to the state and to Selma.”

Dooley, who played quarterback for Auburn University from 1950-’53, talked about his relationship with Ralph “Shug” Jordan, the Tigers’ head coach at the time.

“Coach Jordan taught me that if you don’t believe in all people, then it’s time to start believing in all people,” Dooley said. “I had the honor of playing for coach Jordan in my senior year, and we had the best record of any Auburn team in 17 years.”

Jordan began his football career as a youngster playing under Paul Grist, 40 years the director of the Selma YMCA.


1963, Jordan added to the Auburn playbook a play he learned from Grist. Jordan named the play after Selma in honor of Grist.

Dooley spoke of the joys of coaching. He said that

the biggest joy was when a player came back and told him how Dooley had affected his life. The former Bulldogs’

coach mentioned Billy Payne, who played under him at UGA in the late 1960s.

Payne became a businessman after graduating from Georgia, Dooley said.

Dooley added that Payne’s dream in the mid-1990s was to bring the Summer Olympics to Atlanta – a dream Dooley never thought would come true.

“I asked him if there was anything I could do to help,” Dooley said. “He told me, ‘ I need a half-million dollars.’

“Well, he couldn’t get anyone to give him anything,” Dooley added. “I didn’t think he had a chance because they never award the Olympics to the same country that hosted it just a few years before.

“When the winner was read,” Dooley continued, “Billy’s face turned white because everything he had worked for had come down to that moment.”

Dooley said tears filled his eyes when the 1996 Summer Olympics were awarded to Atlanta. That event, he said, should be an inspiration to dream.

“To dream is the beauty of the human mind,” he said. “The other beauty of the human mind is that you can dream anything. There’s nothing in the world you can’t dream. To do what you want to do is the strength of the human will. To trust yourself to test your limits is the greatest strength of the human will.”

The Selma Quarterback Club’s next meeting will be held Aug. 31. Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville

will be the guest speaker.